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Iain Barber

(He / him)
Professor & Head of the Department of Life Sciences, Aberystwyth University

Iain Barber joined Aberystwyth University as Head of the Department of Life Sciences in November 2022, where he has overall responsibility for a broad academic teaching and research portfolio across the biological, agricultural, animal, veterinary, aquatic and ecological sciences as well as human biology, health, sport & exercise science, and nursing. Professor Barber is an animal biologist and behavioural ecologist with specialist expertise in the fields of host-parasite interactions, fish behavioural ecology and animal personality research, with a particular interest in questions that lie at the intersection of these fields, and how these are impacted in changing environments. His research programme employs a wide range of controlled laboratory experiments, field work and molecular genetic techniques.

Before joining Aberystwyth, Professor Barber was the Deputy Dean of the School of Animal, Rural and Environmental Sciences at Nottingham Trent University (2017-2022). Prior to that he served as the Deputy Head of the Department of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour (2015-17) and as Head of the Department of Biology (2011-15) at the University of Leicester. He previously held a lectureship at Aberystwyth University (2004-06), and from 1998-2004 held successive independent research fellowships, funded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences (at the Kristineberg Marine Research Station, Sweden) and the NERC (at the Universities of Glasgow and Aberystwyth). Professor Barber holds a BSc (Hons) in Biological Sciences from the University of Leicester and a PhD in Fish Behaviour and Parasitology from the University of Glasgow. In 2010 he was the recipient of the FSBI medal, which is awarded in recognition of ‘exceptional advances in the study of fish biology and/or fisheries science’. He was awarded a Senior Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy in 2016.


  • –present
    Deputy Dean, School of Animal, Rural & Environmental Sciences, Nottingham Trent University